After the European Parliament (EP) established a broader definition for ?vodka? products in the EU, Polish vodka producers agreed that it was necessary to promote Polish alcohol abroad, informed Rzeczpospolita newspaper. However, the Polish Spirit Industry (PPS) and Polish Vodka Association have just begun discussing a promotion strategy.On June 19, the EU announced that different types of alcohol can be called ?vodka? (including grappa, anise, or banana-based alcohols) even if not produced using traditional raw materials like potatoes, cereals or sugar beet molasses, the only exception being that labels must list ingredients from which the alcohol was produced.The situation has made traditional Polish vodka producers certain that promotion of Polish products abroad is indispensable. The Polish Spirit Industry already intended to take advantage of EU grants, as the community supports such operations. However conditions require that advertising is done outside the EU and must not be associated with specific brands.Poland is unquestionably a country of vodka, producing many kinds and brands. For years Poland and Russia have argued for the title of vodka?s capital. Most Polish brands known abroad are those of vodka and while Poles are proud of this, it is also a cause for shame. Especially after the U.S. Belvedere vodka advertising campaign based on stereotypes of a primitive Poland. The example showed the importance of a good promotional strategy.PPS wants to invest 6 mln euro to promote Polish vodka. The EU would supply 3 mln if Brussels accepts the proposal, 30 percent would come from Poland?s national budget and producers would supply the remaining 20 percent. The 20 percent is a primary concern. Earlier the Central European Distribution Corporation, foremost vodka producer in Poland, was a PPS member and ready to finance a significant part of the project. However, CEDC left the PPS chain after not receiving desired PPS management positions. CEDC and Wyborowa, a popular Polish vodka brand, now want to move separately. ?We have brought the Polish Vodka Association into being in order to promote Polish vodka and to protect its business interests in the world,? explained Andrzej Szumowski, chief of PVA and Wyborowa vice chairman.PVA?s advertising idea is to promote brands produced by the organization?s members. Wyborowa and CEDC are not excluding cooperation with the Polish Spirit Industry, but not until its strategy is ready. According to Rzeczpospolita neither organization has discussed vodka promotion yet.
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